About Us

 

The Middlesex Coalition for Children’s mission is to improve the lives of children growing up in Middletown and Middlesex County. The Coalition holds public meetings monthly on issues important to children. It convenes task forces to mobilize and coordinate community efforts to address specific children’s issues, and advocates for children at the local, state and national levels. 

 

 

Who We Are

 

The Middlesex Coalition for Children’s (MCC) mission is to improve the lives of children growing up in Middletown and Middlesex County. The Coalition is focused on systems change and coordination and is the lead organization for identifying critical children’s issues and mobilizing the community’s response. On some issues, it takes the lead in detailed planning, agency coordination, and resource identification. On others, it plays a supporting role through another council. 

 

MCC fosters a community of children’s services professionals, activists and parents working across disciplinary and institutional lines, with a culture of collaboration and continuous improvement. The Coalition holds public meetings monthly on issues important to children. It convenes task forces to mobilize and coordinate community efforts to address specific children’s issues, and advocates for children at the local, state and national levels.


MCC is involved in advocacy on legislative activities to ensure that our programs are well served by new legislation and budget shifts.  Additionally, we have worked to get our coalition members working with our legislative delegation to ensure that our message is getting through to lawmakers clearly and in a useful way.

 

MCC is the most comprehensive collaborative in a web of more specialized councils (early care and education, young children’s health, children’s mental health, child protection, youth services, etc.) working to improve children’s services in Middlesex County. 

MCC does not typically take responsibility for implementation (except in an oversight role) or provide direct services to children and families.  The one exception is our Racial Justice Coalition, which integrates youth who serve in the education, training, and leadership of the program.

 

The Coalition focuses its efforts on a broad range of issues, from prenatal heath through college readiness.  However, it directs its efforts strongly to children living in poverty or low-income children.  Additionally, because outcomes are disparate based on race and English language ability, MCC also focuses its efforts on the many children of color and immigrant children living in our community. The Coalition does not typically involve children in its planning but does involve their parents, both in ongoing roles on planning committees and through focus groups and targeted meetings. 

 

The Coalition casts a wide net. It has produced studies of young children’s well-being (2003), a community plan (2009) a community report card (2012), and a report on Middletown’s Children (2016). It has institutionalized regular public meetings and task forces to mobilize communities on issues, and to advocate effectively for children at the local, state and national levels.

 

It has played a significant role in building early childhood systems in the county: the School Readiness Program in Middletown, which with a budget of $2 million provides preschool education and high-quality care for over 250 children; the Early Head Start program, whose $800,000 p.a. Federal grant provides services for 75 children 0 -3 throughout the County; and Early Childhood Councils in all Middlesex County towns.

 

It has promoted strategies and helped build programs to improve children’s physical and emotional/behavioral health -- especially children’s dental health, physical fitness and weight management, and both preventive and early intervention programs in behavioral health (notably the iCARE school-based behavioral health program, Child FIRST and DCF’s Family Assessment program).

 

And it has worked intensively on poverty issues, especially childhood hunger, sponsoring three local studies (2005, 2010, & 2015) and leading community efforts to build an array of anti-hunger programs to protect children from hunger and malnutrition. It has collaborated with Middlesex United Way to start successful Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and diaper distribution programs (in conjunction with The Diaper Bank). 

 

It is involved in addressing children’s issues as they arise -- for instance, an expansion of Middletown’s summer jobs program for low-income teenagers, and ensuring the continuation of Wesleyan’s Upward Bound program after federal defunding.  

 

The Coalition works within a larger network of legislators, service providers, educators, and other child advocates who collaborate to improve the well-being of children in Middletown and the rest of Connecticut. 

 

Sphere of Influence 

The Coalition works within a larger network of legislators, service providers, educators, and other child advocates who collaborate to improve the well-being of children in Middletown and the rest of Connecticut. 

 

 

 

Middlesex Coalition for Children © 2018